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Uber Technologies Inc., had filed a Trademark infringement case against Suber Taxi before The Icelandic Patent Office but IPO rejected the claim. Uber claimed that Suber Taxi has used the word “Uber” to gain popularity and profit in the taxi business. In a Trademark infringement case, Uber claimed that Suber Taxi has done such infringement for not allowing Uber to run a business in Iceland. Case references, pieces of evidence were provided by both the parties. The IPO gave a ruling in favour of Suber Taxi in the month of April 2019.
Article 14 of Act45/1997 of Trademarks Act has been mostly applied in this case. Article 14 prescribes the condition on which the Trademark may not be registered. Article 11, 22, 30 of the said Act is also used in Uber Vs Suber Taxi.
In 2018 an Icelandic Taxi company named Hreyfill applied for a Trademark on the brand Suber Taxi. One has to install an app and book the taxi. Uber Technologies has the same facilities. Uber filed an infringement case against Suber Taxi. Uber claimed that with bad intention Suber has registered the name “Suber”. It stated that Suber is using the word “Uber” for gaining popularity. The Trademark shall not be registered as it is likely to cause confusion. Uber claims that “Uber” and “Suber” sound distinctively similar. It infringes the Trademark right. Icelandic Patent Office said that there is no definition for the word “Uber” in the dictionary. Uber in response stated that in German language Uber means Super and Suber has played with the word super.
Uber technologies urged that Member states of Paris convention are required to respect the rights of foreign brands that are well known. The patent office held that in Iceland Uber is not famous, so there is no infringement of Trademark. The Patent Office pointed out that Uber is written as one word “Uber” for business purpose. Suber Taxi consists of two words “SUBER TAXI” with yellow and black stripes. Therefore there is no likelihood of confusion.
On April 9, 2019, it was held that Suber Taxi is a valid Trademark. The parties can appeal the decision of the Patent Office within two months of the date of award to Appeals on Industrial Property.